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A political economy of health care in Senegal re-visited

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Chapter Summary

Sex is legal in Senegal. As an industry, it is recognized and regulated. Its regulation has become a central instrument for calibrating sexually transmitted diseases, educating the public about them, and then in controlling and eradicating them. All this is achieved through the agency of its women workers—“prostitutes.” They too, are an essential and conspicuous element in the army Senegal has assembled to combat HIV/AIDS. The critical role assigned to these women in this health care struggle helps to re-contextualize and then to unpack the politically and culturally-laden implications of a term such as “prostitute.” That recontextualization and analysis also force a re-evaluation of gendered constructions, and this also implies the need to critically examine the role of women within the general political economy, and within the political economy of health care in Senegal, specifically.

Keywords: AIDS; health care; HIV; political economy; prostitutes; Senegal; sexually transmitted diseases; women workers



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